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More than a bad attitude

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jtmilby

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
As reference to paul's post I have a similar question about PVA offices.
Just this week I had to do an appraisal on a manufactured home. I had never been to this county before, but I had heard the "war stories".
Check this out, this PVA office only as a print out of sales that include the following: the map number, the price it sold for, NO DATE, the address and the sellers name. Then you can not look at the map cards by yourself, there has to be an employee go get them and watch over you while you look at them, and the kicker they charge $3.00 per map card for you to look at them, this makes it pretty hard when there is no description in the sales file on the sold property. I got lucky 4 of the 9 = $27 where manufactured homes, and to top it off, they charge $15 for a copy of the deed and $2.00 per hour to park in thier parking lot.
I really didn't have the choice at the time since I had driven 60 miles to the subject's location, but is it legal to charge for just looking at public records? Needless to say had to tell that new L/O that I would not be doing any more appraisals in that area.
Has anyone ever experienced this?
 

lafferty

Sophomore Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Tennessee
I had a similar experience. This particular county did not note on the card if the improvements were manufactured or stick-built. I had to pull every sale in the past year and look at the line where the kitchen cabinets were described. If it said "below average" it was a modular. I told the tax assessor that she was making my job impossible with over 1500 sales in the past year. She yelled at me in front of a full office that her job was NOT to make my job easy. Then she banned me from her office forever. I cannot go back to that county until she is unelected.
 

Ken in Arkansas

Junior Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Arkansas
I know she can make your life miserable, but how can she ban you from reviewing public documents?
 

David S. Roberson

Senior Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Tennessee
jtmilby;

You need to continue to accept orders in that area, and then charge at least $100 more because of the additional data collection expense. Then be sure to tell the borrower they have to pay extra for the appraisal because of the problems in their public records office; after enough of these borrowers complain, maybe things will change. If you do nothing, nothing will change. I used to charge $100 more for a county adjacent to mine that did not have street signs, because it took forever to find properties. I always told the borrower why they had to pay more than their neighbors in other counties, and I told the folks at the Chamber of Commerce the same thing. A year later they put up street signs. Was I the only motivation for this change? Probably not. But maybe I helped a little.
 

Mountain Man

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Georgia
No street signs!? Eoouch! Never been to a county that didn't have street signs. However, I have been to a county that did not post the road names, but posted a number instead. The map would show Bubba's Farm Road, but the street sign would say Fire Road #385. :roll: Lots of help the map was. 8)
 

Ted Martin

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Kansas
Depending on the state laws the charges may NOT be legal. You might want to contact a local newspaper and have them look into it. We had a similar situation in our state and the paper did a series of articals where they went to each of the counties in the state and ask for public and open record data. Most of the time what came out was that the local officials were simply ignorant of the state law. A follow up survey found that most of the PVD and Deed offices lowered thier fees and opened the records. Some hard cases were going to fight it and legal actions were required to bring them into compliance.
 
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
My hat's off to you guys in the rural areas, I don't know how you do it.
Here, I only have to put up with grid lock, rude people, and dummies all day long.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
I have upon several occasions used the FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) which in OK and Ar does apply. Too bad it is not universal. I do force the issue and the Co. Atty sure hates to see me coming. In Ar a response is required within 72 hr., after that the court must set a hearing within 7 days. Never made it to the 7th day yet without full capitulation. Once they have the notice, they have to contact the county atty. who advises them and invariably they say give it up. OK even requires that copies cannot cost more than 25 cents per page under FOI, but other laws allow them to charge a $1 ea. for copies they give up voluntarily.

Cherokee Co. OK is the worst place I know. They will defy you. Seems to think they are part of the Cherokee Nation, and not a county within the state of Oklahoma. I understand Missouri is much the same way as a non-disclosure state. McDonald county will try to limit you to cpoying three tax cards per day.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
I once had an employee of an assessor yell at me and tell me to get out of the office ( the town clerk sent me to the office). I left and had a nice discussion with the township administrator, who got me the information that I wanted.

The next time I went to that town the clerk greated me with a smile and a "Yes Sir". Never take any crap from a public employee, you have an absolute right to view public records.
 

Tony O\'Regan

Freshman Member
Joined
Feb 28, 2002
Terrel,

I work in Cherokee county quite a bit, besides being very sloppy with the field cards, they are no different than any other county. The office workers are slow, and on par with a box a rocks as far as intelligence goes. But the assessors office does print out a sales listing and will gladly answer any questions you have. The most difficult thing about working Cherokee county is locating most of the rural property. :evil:

My approach to the county is to speak as little as possible, I walk it, use the public access computer to look up my property, then grab the sales listing, sit at a desk, do my work, then leave. I've never had a problem. :)
 
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